Grammar Quiz: No Guts, No….

Way back when this blog was a static Web site, a student from the University of Pennsylvania (as memory serves me) wrote me an e-mail with a question that she had to answer for an English final.  That question involved this sentence, “We are going ice skating,” and asked the grammatical function of “ice skating” […]

Memory Is Tricky

Speaking of memory, mines (intentional pun using an infamous notword) is tricky, which I suspect is the lot of most of us. When I learned of President Gerald Ford’s passing at 93, I was quickly reminded of a quote by Shakespeare and how Ford had defied the meaning of it. The quote I remembered was, “So good, […]

Notwords Part II

Here we go again with what I call notwords, those American English expressions, whether single words or phrases, that have no legitimate basis in actual English.  I’ve mentioned mines as a particularly egregious and unlearned (read: stupid) interpretation of mine but with a possessive “s” added for some unknown reason.  I also hinted at “my […]

James Joyce at Christmas

I dedicated this blog to abusers of English, so what’s one of my first posts about?  Superb writing as evidenced in James Joyce’s novel, The Dead. Actually, I was spurred to post this after reading a review of the 1987 movie version of The Dead, which is still unavailable on DVD or I’d rush out and […]

Blogs to live by, he says

Sorry, I’m just getting this operation going, so there will be some gaps in postings at the outset as I iron out style and technical issues.  I thought you might be interested in checking out another blogger’s List of Top 10 Writers’ Blogs.  The list is more than a year old, so–for one–it had no […]

Abuse English, do you?

Who doesn’t?  Anyway, I hope to expose the phoneys of the world here who abuse English and get the big bucks for it, while at the same time clarifying how simple it is to compose clear English sentences.  This will be a periodical blog, depending on my mood and discovery of the latest big-name abusers and their […]